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Written By JULIA LLOYD
It's always bitter sweet when someone like Beth Early-Rea retires.
Beth is calling time on her career with Caledon Community Services (CCS), as the organization's analyst executive services in the finance and infrastructure division, at the end of August.
“I don't like the word retiring, I like to think of it as handing back the keys and going full-circle,” said Beth.
Just over a year ago in April 2018, Beth lost her husband due to a heart attack. It was a shock for her as it was for the whole community.
But Beth's husband was no ordinary man and Beth herself, is no ordinary lady.
Beth's husband Bill Early-Rea was also a community staple. He was the editor of the Caledon Citizen for over 30 years.
Beth laughed as she recalled some of the things her husband would do that made her smile.
“Bill always had a big camera hanging over his neck, but the joke was, he had this little camera he would take out after he took shots on the big camera and would say, ‘Ok now for the camera that really works,'” she said.
One of the things Beth really wanted the community to know as she enters retirement is her admiration for everyone in the community and all the love they have shown her this past year.
“Some parents started a scrapbook because they had stuff from Bill, and I had one little girl just recently say to me, ‘Oh, I remember. He interviewed me. Of all the people, he interviewed me,' and then she said, ‘Can I give you a hug?' And well, Bill would not have believed that he had such an impact on the community,” explained Beth.
But, as it was mentioned earlier in the article, Beth is no ordinary lady.
Beth has lived and breathed for the Caledon community for the last 50 years. She grew up in Caledon, she attended Herb Campbell Public School and then went to Mayfield Secondary School.
After graduation, she went to Sir Wilfred Laurier and studied history. While still in school, she started as a summer student and then student intern in the heritage department of the Town of Caledon.
When Beth mentioned the idea of coming full circle instead of using the word retiring, she notes that's down to the fact she is actually going to go back to the town as a volunteer after she retires from CCS.
“Now, I've been appointed as a member of the heritage committee for the council term 2018 to 2022. So it is kind of like my life's gone full-circle,” Beth said.
After university, Beth started her career at CCS as a volunteer and within several months she was hired on fulltime.
‘The chair of the board at the time sort of handed me the keys and asked me, ‘can you just hire me, and can you come in full time and sort of hold down the fort?'' Explained Beth.
And, that is why she said earlier in the article, “I like to think of it as handing back the keys.”
The agency was founded as the Bolton Contact Centre in 1971 and was registered with revenue Canada as a charitable organization on Oct. 1, 1971.
In the 80s the CCS became the Caledon Information Centre and staff and volunteers began to turn heir attention to the development of new community services. These efforts spun off as separate organizations with separate boards of directors: Caledon Meals on wheels (1984); Caledon Parent-Child Centre (1987), and Hospice Caledon/Bethell Hospice (1991).
Beth started at the CCS in 1992. When she started there were maybe a total of five employees. Eventually later in the year, the centre hired more staff and the centre continued to grow.
Beth has been at CCS for about 27 years. She is constantly the woman people go to, to find out information about things going on in the community. She even married a community newspaper editor. She was and is extremely dedicated to helping out her community.
Monty Laskin, one of the executive directors, spoke about Beth with such love and care. He said, she will be missed dearly and that there will be a bit of emptiness at the centre once she retires.
“Beth is easy to talk about because all of it is stories about a woman who is so entirely committed to her work for CCS for 27 years, a lover of CCS and all that we do. “ Monty said. “She is a lover of the community for which she devotes so much of her own leisure and volunteer time.”
Post date: 2019-07-11 11:21:05
Post date GMT: 2019-07-11 15:21:05
Post modified date: 2019-07-11 11:21:12
Post modified date GMT: 2019-07-11 15:21:12
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